Hidden in the hills of California lies the picturesque city of Solvang. As the sister city of Alborg, Denmark, Solvang embraces the Danish culture with gorgeous architecture and delectable Danish cuisine. On their anniversary road trip, Military TravelingMom stopped at this small village. Here are 4 reasons why she says Solvang is the perfect California getaway.
Things to do in Solvang, California
On our quest for unique places to stop on our anniversary road trip to San Francisco, a friend recommended Solvang. After a little research, this little Danish town seemed like the perfect way to kick off our anniversary. Read on for things to do in Solvang, California, including where to stay and where to dine.
Where to stay in Solvang, California?
The town may be small, but they are not lacking in hotels. Ranging from standard hotels rooms to individual cottages, you’ll find plenty of Solvang, California hotels to meet all of your needs.
We chose value over plush accommodations since it was just for one night. The King Frederik Inn won out and it was a good choice. Situated in the heart of town, this hotel is within walking distance of everything.
With a lodge-like exterior, this cute hotel boasts a cozy front desk. I might have been cold outdoors, but a warm fire and welcoming staff greeted us. We arrived early, expecting to wait for our room. But we lucked out and checked in early. Although the room was nothing fancy, it was a nice size and very clean.
We had a rough night’s sleep the day before, so the big king size bed was an exciting sight. It was comfy and provided us with a restful night.
Amenities included a heated outdoor pool, complimentary danishes, juice and coffee, free parking and HBO in each room.
What are the best shops in Solvang, California?
Traveling the week before Christmas, this was the just the place we needed to finish up our last minute shopping. Blocks and blocks of little shops lined the streets of Solvang. From chocolate to traditional Danish clothing, this cute little town had a store for just about anything.
I adored the little Danish knick knacks available in many of the stores.
As we strolled to dinner, we stopped in one of the many candy stores and sampled fresh homemade candy sticks. It literally melted in my mouth.
And the antique stores! Gorgeous jewelry, art, silver…you name it and you’ll find it in Solvang antique stores. We spent many hours wandering through each of the stores just overwhelmed by everything we found.
Where to eat in Solvang, California?
Solvang, California restaurants are the shining stars of the small town. The choices are endless and no one will leave disappointed.
I craved a big juicy burger, so we stopped at a local diner, CHOMP. Made with Kobe beef, the Chompasauras burger was hands down one of the best I’ve eaten in a long time. Cooked perfectly to my specifications, I had nothing to complain about.
According to the CHOMP website, the owner, Aaron Peterson wanted a local hangout where customers returned week after week. I have to say he succeeded. The food and service were fantastic with plenty of Solvang residents dining alongside tourists.
Ask around town for dining recommendations, and on the tip of everyone’s tongue is Solvang Restaurant. Home of the Danish aelbleskiver, everyone who visits Solvang needs to dine here at least once.
This hometown favorite is where locals go for their morning cup of joe. We were greeted by smiling faces and open arms. It was like returning home after a long journey.
I had heard all about the aelbleskiver, best described as Danish pancake ball topped with raspberry sauce and powdered sugar. So, I was very excited to try it along with Danish sausage. Both lived up to the hype and had my mouth singing!
What to do in Solvang, California?
This small Danish town offers a wide variety of things to do. From horseback riding to wine tasting, you’ll discover things to do in Solvang for everyone.
Kids of all ages will get a kick out of touring the city by a horse-drawn streetcar or playing in one of the many parks located throughout the village.
During the summer months, visitors can watch a show under the stars at the Solvang Festival Theater or check out the free family movie every Friday night.
There are three unique festivals annually. Taste of Solvang takes place each March and the town comes alive for Danish Days September. We missed the popular Christmas themed Julesfest by just a few days.
But remnants from the festival still around town when we were there. We were more than a little bummed to have missed it.
One evening while walking to dinner, a local resident stopped us. He asked if we were enjoying our stay and to see what we liked about the little town. From our brief conversation, we felt the love he had for his hometown and the pride he took in welcoming us.
So, whether you’re planning a romantic weekend getaway or family vacation Solvang is the perfect town. The quiet Danish village staked a place in our hearts as I’m sure it will in yours.